Bobselds: the sasquatches of the Olympic Games

RICK MACDONNELL, SnowSeekers Inc. 

Sadly, I was only able to attend a single Olympic event during my nine days in Whistler. Fortunately, though, that event was the 4-man Bobsled. These things are fast on TV, but they'rereally fast when they're ten feet from your face. Faster than a Tiger Woods sex scandal. So fast that it is nearly impossible to get a good photo. 

Sorry, let me rephrase that. They're so fast that it is nearly impossible to get a good photo when you're using something that has the shutterspeed of a box camera. I half expect my camera to let out a huge puff of smoke every time I take a shot.
Needless to say, my photographs left a little to be desired. The following is a montage of how my afternoon went.

"How hard could it be?" I thought. They're not moving that fast.
I was sure that I had the dexterity and peripheral vision to
capture a vehicle moving at 140 kilometres per hour.
I still don't know if I took the photo too early or too late.

I swear that this is a different photo. My problem was clearly
that I was trying to get in too tight on the track. But I wanted
that money shot.
Wanting to at least capture something in a photo, I
stood behind some people. Unfortunately, those people
became the entire focus after yet another miss.
When in doubt, shoot the Olympic Rings.

I'd like to tell you that this was meant to be just another
shot of the Rings, but a bobsled is just off camera. I think.
Things were getting quite ridiculous at this point. I feel
the need to point out to you that there's about a 3-4 minute
wait time between bobsleds. So I would wait 4 minutes
every time just to get a shot of some dude in a tuque.
This is as dynamic as it was going to get for me on this day.
A shot of a guy filling in divots with snow. Wow.
It was at this point that I started to worry that I wouldn't
be bringing any decent photos back for my piece. Hence,
the Canada hat. People eat this stuff up. Theoretically.
Realizing that my tight shots weren't cutting it, I moved
back. To similar results.
A couple of Brits who found a silver lining to Great
Britain's disappointing Olympics. The sign reads
This was my breaking point. I had been standing in freezing
rain for nearly two hours trying to get anything that could be
used. After this shot, I got fed up. "Screw it!" I said. "I'm going
back to the rails, and I'm not coming out until I get my shot."
Persistence, as they say, pays off.
Almost there ...


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